Three Shouts on Fastnet Sunday for RNLI Lymington's crew.
The Lymington RNLI volunteer crew were called by the UK Coastguard at 1.25pm on Sunday (6 August) following a distress call from a 12m yacht, the Marriet Harwood, which had run aground on the shingle bank in Christchurch Bay, at the start of the Fastnet Race.
The crew launched Lymington's Atlantic 85 inshore lifeboat David Bradley and were on the scene by 2.15pm. Volunteer helmsman John Husband quickly assessed the situation, checking the crew of the yacht were wearing life-jackets and that they were in no immediate danger.
After speaking to the skipper of the yacht, which was stuck fast, it was decided that the Marriet Harwood's crew would continue to monitor the situation and await the flood tide to enable them to re-float later that evening.
At 4.32pm the Lymington lifeboat station received a further call from the UK Coastguard asking for assistance as the tide had turned and the yacht was beginning to take a pounding, with waves breaking over the vessel.
The David Bradley was back on the scene by 4.47pm and with the worsening weather conditions and the possibility that the Marriet Harwood's crew may have to be evacuated in potentially hazardous rough and shallow water, it was decided to call for support for the RNLI's all-weather lifeboat at Yarmouth.
With good fortune, the rising tide and strong winds suddenly turned the yacht which then re-floated and the crew quickly started the engine and moved into deeper water. The RNLI Yarmouth lifeboat was stood down and the volunteer crew of the David Bradley began to escort the yacht to a safe haven in Lymington.
Passing through Hurst Narrows, a further call was received for assistance from the RNLI Yarmouth lifeboat, which had responded to a distress call from a yacht with a person on board who had suffered a serious head injury.
Arriving on the scene, two Yarmouth volunteer crew were already on board, treating an elderly gentleman and three Lymington volunteer crew were then placed aboard to assist, bringing the yacht swiftly into Lymington.
On arrival the casualty was bought ashore to await the incoming ambulance. The RNLI Lymington Lifeboat was readied for further service by the awaiting volunteer shore crew.
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- Tim Ash, RNLI Public Relations Manager (London/East/South East) 0207 6207426 / 07785 296252 / firstname.lastname@example.org
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Key facts about the RNLI
The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.